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October 2nd 2013
Published: October 10th 2013
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Danny writes:

I have a feeling that this might be a hard day to blog. Although it was our only full day in Monument Valley and the experience of the valley was amazing, there’s only so much you can write about some large red rocks and mesas, you know? However, one of them was shaped like a giant phallus so that might make it a bit more entertaining. Our Navajo guide referred to that particular formation as 'The Three Sisters’. I guess 'The Throbbing Red Shlong’ doesn’t really go with the theme of the place. Anyway, I’m getting ahead of myself so let’s slow down.

As I write this I’m actually sat in the back of the DOG Mobile on the way to Morro Bay, California (west side, throw up the dubs, etc) so we are back dating a bit. From what I remember, we woke up early in the morning to watch the sun rise over the valley. From the view of our hotel balcony, the sun actually rises behind one of the rock formations known as the 'Mittens’ (they look like mittens, would you believe it). I’m sure if you’re reading this you’ve probably seen the pictures I pasted all over Facebook (if not there’ll be some attached to this blog anyway). There’s not a lot I can explain here with words. Just imagine seeing that view in person, it was absolutely beautiful. It kind of puts into perspective what does and doesn’t matter in life. See, when I was watching the sun rise, the last thing on my mind was how much profit I’d be making on the sale of some old beaten up motorcycle, and whether or not my boss would steal the sale anyway. Unfortunately you don’t see this sort of thing very often in day-to-day life and it’s a real shame we’ve become so used to the way things are, but I guess that’s a whole different topic.

Anyway, after sun rise we went to grab some breakfast. Again, ridiculous portions and by this point in the trip I’d gotten rather tired of eating. No wonder stereotypes of overweight Americans exist. This must be what it’s like to be a foi grois destined goose. The bacons mighty good though. We then sat down in the lobby to crack on with the jigsaw puzzle we’d nearly completed the night before while we waited for our Najavo tour guide to take us on our horse trail. By the time our guide arrived we were contemplating taking one piece of the jigsaw with us just so that nobody else could enjoy the fruits of our labour while we were away. I guess in this respect, 500+ piece jigsaw puzzles and the monument valley sun rise have a lot in common; while you’re involved in either, nothing else seems to matter.

After taking multiple jeep trips that covered about half a mile in total, we arrived at the ranch to pick up our horses. We all mounted up and, after the Navajo guide mocked my red neckerchief and called me 'cowboy’, we set off on our 2.5 hour trail. It soon became apparent that Tina’s horse might be a bit special as it seemed to respond to my commands rather than her own. This meant that every time me or Rob tried to gallop past, it’d try to block us off, almost knocking me off at one point when it turned into me. Poor thing. Rob and I agreed amongst ourselves that it was probably just Tina’s lack of master riding ability. She was certainly no John Wayne like us, let’s put it that way, pilgrim. After all, as the wise man once said, a man’s got to have a code, a 'creed’ to live by, and Tina’s seemed to be “I have absolutely no idea what I’m doing.” Our Navajo guide showed us around the valley and pointed out various rock formations (such as the aforementioned Shlong, and the various Mesas). This was probably my favourite part of the entire trip. Bucket list, TICK.

Two and a half hours later, we arrived back at the ranch. We were all ready to dismount by this point. I have no idea how cowboys rode around all day in crotchless chaps, your behind sure does take a pounding, although I guess this does help explain Brokeback Mountain. That was just good preparation and forward planning. We went back to the hotel to discover that some wayward bandits had completed our jigsaw. *******s! Infuriated, off we went into the desert in the 4x4 DOG Mobile. You can actually drive through the valley in your own vehicle on a preset dirt trail. We took some of our own close up snaps and arrived back at the hotel an hour later. Never have I been happier to see asphalt. After an hour of being bounced around in the Ford I was beginning to feel a bit queezy. I have no idea how the bloke behind us was managing to blaze his way through the desert in his Chevvy Camero. It was probably a rental.

Later on we stuffed our faces again while watching the fairly cloudy sunset, and then retired to our beds after a long and exhausting day. We did try starting another puzzle, but after the disappointment of the earlier events we just couldn’t face it.

P.S. If you’re reading this blog and were staying at The View hotel, Monument Valley AZ/UT between the days of the 2nd and 3rd of October 2013 and completed a jigsaw puzzle in the main lobby featuring images of the surrounding valley, just watch your back OK? I’m coming for you.

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